Another child tracking and alerting service has been announced called AmberWatch Mobile. The service comes via the AmberWatch Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of child abduction. AmberWatch Mobile is a sub-brand of the AmberWatch Foundation. The service will allow a child who feels threatened to use their phone to send their location to friends and family if they need assistance. The service also allows certain friends and family to access a web interface to see the child’s location.
QUALCOMM will be collecting revenue from the service, and donating 100% of that revenue from AmberWatch Mobile back to the AmberWatch Foundation. The service should eventually be available on multiple carriers in the USA and is expected to go live in September.
Parents can also setup “scheduled checks” to make sure their child is where they are supposed to be, when they are supposed to be there.
The AberWatch Foundation website provides an interesting statistic that a child is reported missing every 40 seconds, and provides a ticker which shows approximately how many children have gone missing since you arrived at the site, a sobering statistic.
Similar systems such as Sprint Family Locator have caused a flurry of discussion about how far parental monitoring should go. While there are probably some people using such services in a questionable manner, the technology has an important and valid safety role as well.